Be careful with rescues
According to the article “Restoring identity” (Dec. 4), women are educated in the area of the danger dynamics of abusive relationships. This can be confusing, especially when they sometimes try to change their abusers. I don’t believe that you can change someone else, only yourself. Abusers have to be internally motivated to want to change their behavior.
One must be careful of whom you are trying to change, help or rescue. People with a lot of pain and agony can conceal it quite well in order to get their needs met. About 30 years ago, I trotted in like a knight in shining armor and got the poop kicked out of me. I wasn’t aware that she had been molested by her father and neighbor, and that when she was born her father had wanted all boys. Abuse was her normal, and she was very uncomfortable with anything else. My coat of armor ended up in the scrap yard, and I wasn’t tough enough, or smart enough, to walk away and rejoice.
The surface can be quite seductive and one would be wise to do some research and homework before attempting to rescue or enable someone who, tragically, is actively looking for someone to pay.
James Gordon Perkins